Saturday, April 24, 2010

Green Thumb Part I

The weather today was absolutely lovely, so we decided it was the perfect day to work on our landscaping! I can honestly say that I do not have a green thumb on my body, but I think that it actually turned out quite well.



They are all perennials - the 3 taller plants in the back are day-lilies, and the 4 smaller green ground covers in the front are wormwood. The mulch is actually brown rubber, made from old recycled tires - compared to typical wood mulch, this stuff wont decompose, blow away, attract bugs/insects/ants, create dust and/or dirt, etc. It's guaranteed for at least 12 years and the color isn't supposed to fade.

The plants will obviously grow larger and fuller with time, and the flowers will blossom. It's still missing some stone edging, which is our project for tomorrow, but I think it looks much better than it did before! The previous owners had left a hodgepodge of rose bushes, random plants and weeds - so this is a HUGE upgrade from when we first bought the house. We may still fill in some of the empty space with random colorful annuals, but I want to get the stone edging done and allow the day-lilies to bloom first before we add anything else.

Here is the stone edging that we are considering - 12x6 stamped blocks from Home Depot

What do you guys think?

Saturday, April 17, 2010


So I am on a mission to make our 3 season porch feel more homey - more like another functional room in the house, rather than a random storage space off the back of the house. It really is a great space and we have actually come to love being out there, but it is definitely in need of some TLC.

We've gotten a good start on the process, by purchasing some patio furniture

And also by adding some other pieces to room, that didn't previously have a place in our house yet. Overall it's starting to look a lot better, but it still feels like kind of an unfinished hodgepodge.

My most recent attempt at making this room more homey was to add some window treatments. But given the unique size of the windows, that task proved to be much more difficult than I had anticipated. Working on a frugal budget and limited extra wall space, this is what I came up with

 What do you guys think? I wanted something neutral and natural - something to make the space feel like another room of the house, but also to bring the outdoors in and maintain the true identity of the room. I wanted the window treatments to accent the windows and view, not take away from them.

We are actually hoping DID to get some painting done in this room today. I want to bring a lighter more earthy color to the walls - we're planning for a very light green, with white trim. EDIT: We did get the painting done and the above photo features the room with freshly painted light green walls and white trim!!!

And eventually I would like to bring a more natural color outdoor carpet into the space as well.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Back from the Mile High City

And we're back - from Colorado that is. We arrived back home around 11am on Sunday morning, after a long night of layovers and redeye flights. But after a lovely 5 hour nap, it was all worth it ;o)

It was an absolutely amazing few days in Estes Park, Colorado. The weather was beautiful, the scenery was breathtaking, the nuptials were perfect, the company was great, and the Stanley Hotel was everything I ever dreamed it would be and more :o)

So here is what our itinerary looked like:
  • Wednesday - 
    • flight from NY to Denver, CO
  • Thursday - 
    • scenic drive from Denver to Estes Park
    • ghost tour
    • rehearsal dinner
  • Friday - 
    • wedding at the Stanley Hotel
  • Saturday - 
    • sight seeing around Estes Park
  • Sunday -
    • flight from CO back to NY

Here's a rough first shot of the breathtaking first view of the Rockies from the highway heading out of Denver

Arriving at Estes Park

First glimpse of the historic Stanley Hotel

Finally seeing my hotel up close

Isn't she beautiful?!?!

Here are a few shots from the Ghost Tour at the hotel

One of the ballrooms, which was used in the mini-series

the stage in the ballroom, which was actually built for the movie and the hotel decided to keep it even after they were done filming

the infamous grand staircase

 the hotel lobby

the original Otis elevator, also used in the movie

the access door to the bell tower, which had Redrum written on it

the tunnel system in the basement

 the dollhouse replica from the movie

hallway in the Stanley Hotel

The biggest downfall of the ghost tour and our time at the Stanley Hotel, was that the entire wing of Room 217 (the infamous room from the movie(s) and the room where Stephen King himself stayed, came up with the story for, and actually penned the first draft of the Shining novel) was closed for remodeling :o(

However, I was determined to get my shot of the infamous room (or at least the door). And so while we were staying overnight in the hotel, I took it upon myself to sneak into the closed remodeling area and snagged a quick pick of the door :o)

totally worth it!!!

And there ya have it folks - the famous Stanley Hotel!!! What a surreal experience, to finally see it in person.

Of course I cannot neglect the primary reason for our trip to Colorado - the wedding of our friends. Which was equally as beautiful and amazing as the setting in which it took place.

 the rehearsal dinner

view from the rehearsal dinner

my father-in-law was the officiant

here comes the bride

wine ceremony

husband and wife!!!

arriving at the reception

first dance

A beautiful event and a awesome trip. We had an amazing time with family and friends.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Cuz I'm leavin, on a jet plane...

Don't know when I'll be back again.

Well, I do know when I'll be back again lol our plane touches back down in town early Sunday morning. But this afternoon we are taking off and should arrive in Denver late tonight!!! Our good friends are getting married on Friday, and we are flying to Colorado to witness the nuptials and celebrate with the new Mr. and Mrs.

Bonus excitement for this trip, is the location of the wedding...

The Stanley Hotel

Otherwise famously known as 
The Overlook Hotel from Stephen King's The Shining!!!

I have been in love with this hotel since I was old enough to read the book and watch the movie, and I am sooooooo excited to finally get to visit it in person!!! I've spent the last few days watching the re-make mini series of the movie (which features the actual novel inspiring Stanley Hotel, as opposed to the random Oregon hotel that director Stanley Kubrick decided to use in the original film). I have a nice list going of all the good photo-opp locations around the hotel that I want to be sure to see, and of course we'll be going on a guided ghost tour (squeee!!!).

I shall return next week with reviews and photos (of both the hotel and beautiful wedding, of course ;o).

Stay tuned!!!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

They're Heeeere

My new Pottery Barn Painterly Paisley bedding set and entertainment tower that is :o) And I absolutely love them!!!

The PB bed set was purchased to go in our soon-to-be second floor master bedroom, which is currently being remodeled. But I really wanted to see what it looked like all laid out, so I decided to try it out in our current bedroom. Here's what we got...

Can I just say, that I am head-over-heals in love!!!

Our bedroom was already painted a baby blue color, and I wanted something a lil darker and more turquoise-blue-green for our new master bedroom. But I have to say, the baby blue actually kind of works well with this set.

My obsession with this set, began with an inspiration room -

Items from the inspiration room totaled $1,053.20 (yikes!!!)

My mission is to recreate this look in our new master bedroom, for less than $500.00 (ahhhh, much better :o)

How do you think I did?

It's obviously not complete yet - aside from the fact that it's not even in the correct room, the furniture still hasn't been painted, the hardware (lamps & curtain rods) haven't been upgraded yet, and I would still like the walls to be a little richer in color. But other than that I like to think that we're off to a pretty good start.

Our entertainment tower also arrived this weekend, and I have to say it's a wonderful upgrade from our poor wine butler that was being used to house our media equipment.

It's everything we wanted and more. It matches the rest of our furniture, has a beautiful glass door and extra storage drawer, and it fits every single one of our media devices with room to spare. What more could we ask for??? Oh yea, the $2.95 shipping helped too :o)

Needless to say it was a very exciting Friday when I woke up to all of these special deliveries on my door step. But last Friday was exciting for another reason - it was also a holiday, which meant that I had the day off from work. And not only did I have the day off from work, but it was gorgeous outside - 80° and sunny to be specific!!!

What better way to celebrate this magnificent day than with a lil shopping trip ;o) So my BFF and I headed out for some shopping and lunch. And of course, I can never come home from a shopping trip empty handed - this trip was no exception.

I have been on the hunt for a patio furniture set for our three season porch, and I finally found my dream set at Target!!! The minute I test drove these bebes, I just had to have em!!!

They are magnificent... dark brown resin wicker, extra deep seats, and plush neutral colored cushions. 

This space still needs a lot of work (that nasty grayish-blue walls, ceiling, and carpet just needs to go... ewwww!!!). The plan is to get some new neutral colored carpet, then color splash the walls with lighter brighter yellow and green accents, white trim, and window treatments. It's a work in progress, but we're getting there.